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THE 3010 Religion, Medicine, and Ethics

This course offers an interdisciplinary analysis of the intersections of Religion, Medicine, and Ethics.  In particular, it will offer an alternative to the Western trend to bifurcate spiritual care from physical care. As Max Weber pointed out a century ago, modern society treats the human being as a substance to be manipulated and controlled. The current technocratic paradigm views healthcare as merely the application of the latest scientific knowledge and technique without concern for the spiritual nature of the human being. In juxtaposition to this current trend, this course will explore how illness, health and healing are religious experiences requiring analysis through a theological-ethical paradigm. We will demonstrate the need for a complementary understanding of the roles of medicine and religion in order to incorporate holistic care into more clinical settings. Specifically, this course will highlight the importance of integrating a holistic approach to health and wellbeing that addresses the physical, spiritual, social and emotional dimensions of the patient. Lastly, this course will examine how health and wellbeing were constitutive elements of the Christian faith and the need to recover religious practices aimed at restoring holistic wellbeing.